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United States 16, Wallace 11, Us 10, Oliver Stone 9, Henry Wallace 8, California 4, New York 4, America 4, Vietnam 4, Showtime 4, Ronald Reagan 3, Arizona 3, Harry Truman 3, Aaron Swartz 3, Texas 3, Roosevelt 3, Illinois 3, U.s. 2, Chicago 2, Karen 2,
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  LINKTV    Democracy Now    News/Business. Independent global news hour featuring news  
   headlines, in depth interviews and investigative reports....  

    January 15, 2013
    4:00 - 5:00pm PST  

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he revealed the greed of the financial industry in the hollywood hit "wall street." now oliver stone and an historian have teamed up to produce a tan part series called oliver stone's and hold -- and told history of the united states. it draws on archival findings and recently declassified documents. it examined everything from the cold war to the fall of communism, continuing through to the obama administration. this is a trailer for the miniseries.
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>> i want to make it as exciting as it can be. history is an interesting subject. we want to report what actually happened. you cannot just except what is handed down. this is the key to the whole series, is to find out how we got to where we are. it is a great, great story. >> that was the trailer for "the untold history of the united states." it will air on monday evenings at 8:00 p.m. and is available on demand. oliver stone joins us here in new york, and we are joined by his co-author, peter. we welcome you both to "democracy now." oliver stone, you have been working on this for years, and be announced to people. why? >> it was apri big job for
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need. i have been working on it for four and a half years. i recently discussed wallace and the bomb at one of his glasses and we ended up talking for about an hour, hour-and-a-half. wallace was a key to the link -- would we have dropped the bomb? that is the origin mess. still my daughter, in a good school, a private school, is learning that we dropped the bomb because we had to. the japanese were fanatic, and
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we would have lost many lives taking japan. there is an alternative to that story. strategically, it made no sense. >> why? >> the japanese were already defeated. they were looking for a way out of the war. the united states knew they were defeated. there was a a telegram from the japanese emperor asking for peace. everybody knew that they were defeated and looking for a way out. the people who knew that the best were the russians because the russians were asked to intervene on their behalf and get them better surrender terms. once the russians invaded, that undermined both their diplomatic
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strategy and their military strategy. that is what really ended the war. we had already been bombing japanese cities. we firebombed over 100 cities. from the japanese standpoint, a a 200 planes and 1000 bombs could not change the equation, but it was the russian invasion. >> dahlin move a huge army -- alin move the huge army towards japan. if you really are interested in ending this war and using russian troops, it was perfect. >> let's start with a quip from the series. this challenges the prevailing logic of world war ii, the so-
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called "good war." quakes generations of americans have been taught that the united states reluctantly dropped bombs at the end of world war two to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of americans. but the real story is much more complicated and much more disturbing. many americans view world war ii as the "good war" in which the united states triumphed over fascism and militarism. others, not so blessed, remember world war ii as the bloodiest war in human history. by the time it was over, 65 million people lay dead, including an estimated 27 million soviets, between 10 and 20 million chinese. 6 million jews, 6 million germans, 3 million non-jewish polish, a a 2.5 million
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japanese and 1.5 million yugoslavian. hungary in the united states each counted between a quarter million and a half million dead. >> a war with the most carnage in the history of the world. >> is a huge come at and where we begin. a lot of school kids do not know that the british empire was the dominant empire and had so many resources around the world. churchill was fighting, among other things, for the retention of the colonies and oil supplies. he never starts a second front for about two years. it has been promised in 1942 to
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, who is rolling the germans back and winning the war. it is an interesting story. the british go into athens in 1944 after they have liberated it, so to speak, but they end of fighting street battles with the communist resistance fighters who had fought very directly against the nazis. it is a dirty story. >> most americans think the united states won the war. the reality is, for most of the war, the americans and british combined were fighting 10 german divisions. the russians were fighting a 200 german divisions. the russians toward the guts of the '90s army. >> let's go back to another club.
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and this is about henry wallace, franklin delano roosevelt post of vice president and agriculture commerce secretary. it suggests that america would have been on a very different trajectory had his pass not been blocked in 1944. >> seeing the war clouds gathering on the horizon, roosevelt decided to run for a third term against the strongly anti-war candidate wendell willkie. the stakes were high. the nation would soon be a war. roosevelt weigh the options and chose a controversial secretary of agriculture, henry wallace, as his running mate. wallace had successfully overseen rebuilding after the
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depression. he had provided food stamps and school lunches. he instituted programs for land use planning and soil conservation. he carved out his credentials in the new year deals as an outspoken anti-fascist. he was considered the scientific community's best ally. he spoke out strongly against the building of a of racial theories in rebuke of the hitler polity -- policy. >> he first introduced me to the mysteries of plant fertilization. i spent a good many years breeding corn because the scientist deepened my appreciation of plants in a way i could never forget. superior ability is not the exclusive possession of any one provided men aret right
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given the right opportunity. >> democratic party leaders feared wallace's views. it looked like his nomination would go up in flames when roosevelt, angry and frustrated, rode a remarkable -- wrote a remarkable letter in which he flatly turned down the nomination. >> the democratic party has failed when it has fallen to those who think in terms of dollars instead of human values. until the democratic party shakes off the shackles of conservatism, reaction and appeasement, it will not continue its march to victory. the party cannot face in both directions at the same time. therefore, i declined the honor of the nomination for the president. >> his wife, eleanor roosevelt,
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save the day, the first presidential wife ever to address a delegation. she told them we face a grave situation. >> an extraordinary nomination in an ordinary time. >> the boss is buckled and put wallace on the ticket. >> i just heard the news of my nomination and there is just one thing i want to say. i am confident that under the leadership of president roosevelt, we shall have a united democratic party, a victory in november and security for the american people. >> and that was the voice of henry wallace, nominated for vice president. oliver stone, your inspiration for this whole series was henry wallace. why? talk about his significance. >> the inspiration was the bomb,
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the atomic bomb. the bomb shaped all of our lives. we live in fear of it in school. we had air raids. we came near the cuban missile crisis. it haunts our policy until 1989 during the cold war with the soviets. but it continues on, if you notice. i wonder what happened in the 1990's. it continues in the war and terror, the war and noriega, the war on drugs. did the bomb have to start all this? did we have to keep doing this? the bomb is what leads you to wallace, because wallace was a key figure. he was supposed to be vice president in 1944. he was a popular figure. voters wanted him instead of truman. it was like a frank capra movie where everything was rigged from
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the inside. there are 90 seconds in which he almost makes it, he almost squeezes in. the crowd is cheering for him. the bosses kept him out of the convention that night and overnight they overturned money, favors and bribes. and a little unknown party hack, really, called harry truman, becomes leader of the world with all the power, and like george bush, he blows it. >> henry wallace would later run for president. >> he would, and he was unsuccessful. he was smeared as a communist about point. the real turning point was the convention. >> wallace has been lost to history. nobody knows henry wallace anymore. when henry luce in 1941 said the
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20th-century must be the american century, the united states must dominate the world, wallace said the 20th-century must be the century of the common man. he calls for a people's revolution in the tradition of the french revolution, american revolution, russian revolution. we must wipe out monopolies and cartels. we must and colonialism, imperialism, racism. and we must collaborate to refashion the world at the end of the world -- and of the war. the upper was bj at the end of the war. that was the view he had and the leaders hated him. he was the exemplar of everything good that the democratic party has ever stood for. >> we will be back in a minute.
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>> this is democracy now. the war and peace report. oliver stone and peter have "the untoldok, history of the united states." >> i want to ask about president reagan. you have a chapter titled death squads for democracy. >> the caribbean is our lifeline to the outside world. two-thirds of foreign trade and petroleum pass through the panama canal and the caribbean.
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in the european crisis, nearly half would go through these areas by sea. >> talk to us about ronald reagan's central american policy. >> he sent it back about 20 years. he took the cold war to a new level. he almost took it to the edge of world war again. he said constantly that the soviet union was the head of the united states in every military capacity. we were always ahead. a a but we were always the underdog in our own mind. central america, in regin's mine, becomes the bulwarks of communism. -- in ronald reagan's mind, becomes the bulwark of communism. they are going to come up. he is worried about what mollah, honduras, going read.
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central american molla countries going read. i saw soldiers there the reminded me of my own experience in vietnam, young, walking around, lost, white skin and all of that. i said do you remember vietnam? they said we do not want to talk about it. there were death squads, terror, the right wing parties of central america took they're not from reagan and karen -- nod from the reagan and killed dozens of people. out of the economics of ronald reagan, the south americans were decimated.
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the international monetary fund and world bank play a huge role. people turned against it. the leaders that came in at the 20th century were reactions against ronald reagan. >> you talk about obama, managing a wounded empire. you are fiercely critical of but you also support him. >> i support him because the alternative was more frightening. obama has made it very clear that it is about american power. we are the "indispensable nation in the world," which is a form of american exceptional as some. he made it very clear that he is going to take troops and so forth out of afghanistan and
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q, but he is committing on a full spectrum dominance to the containment of china. it does not end. i think we will see him making alliances and treaties with countries around the world. he is already expanding the bush version of security. he has not gone back on any of the civil liberties laws. >> he has expanded it. we were so critical of bush for doing surveillance of people without judicial review. obama is targeting and killing people without judicial review. we are acting as judge, jury and executioner now. >> this is obama on the secret drone and more.
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>> it has to be a target bed is authorized by our laws. it has to be serious and on speculative threat. it has to be a situation -- not speculative threat. it has to be a situation where we cannot capture. our preference is always to capture because we can gather intelligence. but the most dangerous targets operate in remote regions and it is difficult to capture them. we have to make sure that in whatever operations we conduct, we are very careful about avoiding civilian casualties. >> we only have a minute left, but i was just thinking about the yemeni cleric's 16-year-old
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son who was killed two weeks after his father was killed in a drones strike. >> people will hate us more for doing this and invading the sovereignty of pakastani, yemen, as so many countries. the united states is acting with impunity. the biggest issue is that in the history of empires, and they have all fallen, no one has had a monopoly on any weapon, ever. predator drones will be made by other people and they will be coming this way or to our bases under the -- bases around the world. we're very vulnerable, and mostly of created hatred. >> when we started our drone yemen, there were
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300 a qaeda man -- 300 of qaeda members. now there are 700 or 800. to the operators here, they are bugs buts. >> we have to get a comprehensive peace plan. weeping cannot be the allied air. we have to join -- we cannot be the allied air -- outlier. obama call thus the indispensable nation. the united states has been slowly militarizing, a full spectrum dominance of air, land, s.c., space, a cyberspace.
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going to haveu're a triple can be shield -- canopy shield. all kinds of war of the world's weaponry as possible. we refuse to go along with any proposals to bring peace to space. in 2006, 166 nations voted 166- 1. the one nation that would not go along with it was us. this makes us very dangerous to the world. this is global. this is what truman did when he dropped the bomb on hiroshima. that is the great link. the reason we are good, the reason we hold ourselves higher, is because we have the bomb. it is a great privilege to have the bomb. if any country had done what we
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did to iraq, there would have been repercussions. because we have the bomb, there are no repercussions. >> and we are self distracting. osama bin ladin said he would get us to destroy ourselves with insane defense spending, and he was right. $4 trillion. that is a lot of money, plus all the kids being killed. and not just killed, but they're coming back not only and duties, but multiple amputees. they are getting their genitals blown off. they are coming back in terrific shape. -- in horrific shape.
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>> talk about the creative process, the dynamic. it talked about something centered -- it started centered around henry wallace and became a 10-partneer. >> when we first talked, it was a 60 minute, 90 minute documentary. i thought we could do that this year. the next time i met with him, it had become 10 parts and it took the last four years of our lives. >> i want to go back briefly. it is really important to get this story out. this is a long book, but it is simple to read, easy to read. this is written to the age of
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17-18. >> what is the difference between the people's history of the united states and this? >> that is a great book that focused on history from the bottom of. this goes from the top down. i think they complement each other. >> what is untold? >> i would not say untold, but ignored or forgotten. >> unearned. -- unlearned. much of it was at one point on the front page of the new york times. >> the rose of a letter condemning the democratic party was -- roosevelt letter condemning the democratic party was virtually unknown. >> if you ask people, americans do not know history.
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they have two problems. one is that they do not know history. the other is that the history they do know is wrong. 12% of high-school seniors are proficient in history. 12%. americans do worse in history than they do in math and science. >> one of the reasons is that kids are bored by it because it is taught -- they know the ending. that is why history is not popular. we end up like a tv serial, the good guys who come out ok. they want the juicy stuff, the horrible stuff. when lynne cheney was at the national endowment of humanities, she was very active in suppressing and changing history books. texas has been very active in keeping what our leadership does
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badly out of the books. >> and that is the standard for textbooks all over the country, texas. >> i want to go back to the moment we first talked about, when henry wallace is defeated to be the vice-presidential running mate, as he had been the time before, for fdr. why did fdr give in? he had been so powerful? he had bucked the system before. he was a little bit more like obama today, but circumstances changed him. >> what changed him was the uprising on the left. in 1934, the massive strike movement, the rise of upton sinclair, there was a massive
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upsurge of the left in the mid- 1930's. the republican right was almost voted out of congress in 1936. there was a very sharp move to the left, and that made it possible for roosevelt to propose more progressive policies. the same thing is missing under obama. that is why we held out some hope for obama, if we could have an upsurge politically in the united states. it seems to have died down. when obama took office, he demobilize the movement that supported him in 2008. >> it is only theory, but roosevelt was exhausted. he did not even go to the conventions in san diego when he said, if i was voting personally, i would vote for
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wallace. he backed him, but he did not fight the bosses. eleanor roosevelt was heartbroken about this. you'rehard to believe vi going to die. he thought he would fight for peace. he told churchill the stop worrying about the soviets. these things work themselves out. he had a great relationship with stalin. so did wallace. grains and the result was harry truman. -- >> and the result was harry truman. >> a of a party hack. part of the prendergast machine.
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prendergast was the party boss in kansas city before he went to federal prison. they asked him why they chose harry truman and he said, i wanted to show the world that a well or ill machine could take an office boy and get him to well oiled machine could take an office boy and get him elected to senate. other senators called him the senator from prendergast. he squeaks in to get reelected in 1940 and then they elevated him, not because he was qualified to be president, as emitted over and over again, but because he did not have a lot of enemies and he was very pliable. if wallace had been in there, there would have been no atomic
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bomb, and no nuclear arms race, and very possibly no cold war. wallace could see the world through the eyes of our adversaries. he understood the soviets. he understood the chinese. >> he was an anglophobe too. roosevelt was as well. he repeatedly told his son, we are not going to be played as a good time charlie as we were in world war i. >> he also campaigned with african americans at a time of jim crow, and went to africa. >> he was shocked. he said the british empire said these people back a hundred years. >> you made the movie born on
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the fourth of july. you made platoon. and now have written the untold history of the united states and done a showtime series. what is most important, do you feel, that has not been told in the past and maybe even in your films? the bomb, youith obam can work your way through the eisenhower years. he was a benign face, but their foreign policy starts a parade of intervention that is criminal. and he gets away with it. he builds up our arsenal of 30,000 nuclear warheads. >> p p e has one finger on the button when he takes off -- he has one finger on the button when he takes office.
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a dozen fingers when he leaves. >> he puts us in vietnam. he financed 80% of it. he was definitely with the colonialists. after world war ii, to be in anglophobe is very important, because the british do go back to all of these places. truman is seduced, influence, pressured, whatever. he goes right with the british position, everything he was warned not to do by roosevelt. we go back into indochina, back into correa, back into supporting the colonial position in the third world. eisenhower continued down. kennedy continued it. there is an argument that planned tofinitely ca withdraw from vietnam. i went to vietnam. i served.
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it was not like a st. paul in damascus moment where i read woke up and changed, that i did come back terribly bothered, and it took me many years to work out. for the last 30 years of my life, they're completely contrary to the first 35 years of my life. i think coming from the other side to where i am, i have learned a certain dimension of experience and that is why i am doing this. >> finally, what lessons can president obama learn from your tv series on showtime. >> it would be great if you watched it. -- he watched it. the best lesson is compassion. i think he has it. he has a sense of the world. seeing through history, seeing
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the world through other people's eyes and having empathy for others, roosevelt had it. kennedy had it. kennedy was the first person since world war ii to knowledge the suffering of the russian people. get in touch with the heart. you can be -- i would say soft is a good word. compassionate. you can make friends around the world. we can be a partner with the entire world. there are 180 nations out there. instead of being the one who says i am the bully, i am in charge, in the global policeman. it is my way or the highway. >> oliver and peter have written a remarkable book called the untold history of the united states and we are offering it to you for a $150 contribution if
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and have dinner with you. your contribution keeps link tv alive and democracy now on a link tv. be sure that you can get an open dialogue on issues you care about, maybe did not know about before. we urge you to go to the phone right now. looking at "the untold history of the united states," which you can get for $150, or together with the dvd -- and you want the dvd. it is quite remarkable. both are yours for $200. we urge you to go to the phone right now. they write "the notion of american exceptional as some dating back to 1630 still warps
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the notion of america in the world. history tells a different story ." the trace the american empire through the bloody suppression of the filipino struggle for independence, the repeated u.s. interventions, covert operations and wars in latin america asia and the middle east. the transformation of america into a prying national security state, the accumulation of fast fortunes by the wealthiest americans and the troubling assaults on civil liberties. they construct a shocking but meticulously documented people's history of the empire that offers stark contrast to the bush-cheney policies that put us out war in two muslim countries us why the obama
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administration has had such a difficult time cleaving a new path. the introduce you to a pantheon villains. and v they reveal that the atomic bombings of hiroshima and nagasaki were militarily unnecessary and morally indefensible. the united states, not the soviet union, or the lion's share the responsibility for perpetuating the cold war. they say the united states has overthrown democratically elected leaders and thrown millions of people into poverty. u.s. presidents, especially in wartime, have frequently
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trampled on the constitution and international law. we have come terrifyingly close to nuclear war. the book is over 700 pages. american leaders often believe they are unbound by history, yet we must face our troubling history honestly in order to set a new course for the 21st century. their conclusions will astonish even experts but there is only one question readers can answer. is it too late for america to change? get a copy of the book. get a copy of the dvd. get a copy of both, and keep alive. you ensure that someone in montana or maryland can watch democracy now. some delays in tennessee, texas, new mexico, arizona,
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colorado, wyoming, utah, can watch oliver stone and peter nick on democracy now. oliver stone gets plenty of coverage on his films. but when it comes to issues that are close to his heart, he is on democracy now. networks are not as interested. make the call that makes a difference. you make this broadcast possible. any contribution you can make. $10 for a bumper sticker. $100 for a baseball cap or tote bag. $200 for the democracy now coup hoodie.
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$125 for the t-shirt. $75 for our own brand of coffee, fair trade, organic. mugs.for the moth or come here and we will have coffee together. we will have muffins and coffee while you watch the broadcast. bring a special guest, a young person or an older person interested in journalism. watch the broadcast. kickback. drink it in and then i get to host you for dinner as i am doing tonight. i am so excited to be doing that tonight. we would love to host you here. there is no expiration date. february, as i said yesterday, we are 16 going on 17. it is our 17th anniversary.
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support independent, local, grass-roots news by calling in and doing what you can. pledged $5,000-$10,000. if you have done well and want to do good, what a difference it makes. you cannot imagine. we have a bare bones budget that allows people all over the world and 1100 television and radio stations to access democracy now. to read the transcripts. to watch. to listen. we are translated into spanish and to japanese. we urge you to go to the phones and let us know you're there. a final time, "the untold history of the united states," yours for $150. if is an amazing book. the dvd of our extended conversation is yours for $100.
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put them together for $200. we have less than 10 seconds. make your call. come to new york for dinner and a show. a show. i